AMC, IFC and Epix go live on Sling TV

Don Draper, meet Sling TV: The recently launched online TV subscription service started to carry AMC and IFC as well as the Epix family of movie channels Wednesday, which means that Sling TV subscribers can now tune in live for episodes of shows like The Walking Dead and Mad Men.

AMC and IFC are part of Sling’s $20 base package, which also includes ESPN1 and ESPN2 as well as TNT, TBS, Galavision, HGTV and a handful of other cable channels. Sling TV is also introducing a new Hollywood add-on package that includes Epix, Epix 2, Epix 3, Epix Drive-In and Sundance TV. The add-on package will cost customers an additional $5 a month, just like Sling’s existing add-ons.

The Hollywood add-on package will come with a replay feature to catch up on shows up to seven day after they aired. That’s neat, but likely won’t help to make Sling’s catch-up policy any less confusing.

Currently, the service offers three-day catch-up for channels like HGTV, Food Network, Galavision and a few others, but no catch-up at all for ESPN, Cartoon Network and TNT. But wait, there is more: “AMC and IFC will have the 3-Day-Replay feature for select content,” a Sling TV spokesperson told me, adding: “We are looking to work with AMC Networks to expand this feature moving forward.”

Inconsistent catch-up rights notwithstanding, the addition of Epix, IFC and especially AMC could help Sling to win over more would-be cord cutters looking to ditch pay TV for a cheaper alternative. Mad Men and The Walking Dead are some of those appointment TV shows that fans try to watch as soon as they air in order to avoid spoilers. Getting access to them through a $20 plan does sound pretty reasonable, considering that buying individual episodes in HD would cost consumers $12 per month for a single show.

For a first look at Sling TV, check out my previously recorded video below:


ClipSync wants to take videos viral, moment by moment

ClipSync Moments gives viewers the ability to share videos with friends on social networks. But instead of sharing a link to the entire video and having their friends search for the part it refers to, ClipSync attaches comments to a specific moment in time.

Hollywood overlooks the web, except when it can be put on TV

While this year’s Emmy nominees once again neglected to recognize any web originals, that hasn’t stopped Hollywood from enlisting Internet-originating content for adaptation. But is Rhett and Link hopping to IFC and Lisa Kudrow moving Web Therapy to Showtime good or bad for web series?

IFC Dips Its Cinematic Toe Into Subscription Streaming

While it won’t move the needle much on its content library, IFC Entertainment announced yesterday that it will offer 53 films through Netflix’s (s NFLX) Watch Instantly streaming service, reports Variety.

True, that’s not a very large number, but it marks the first time IFC is providing its content to a subscription streaming service. Up until now, the company has placed films from its 300-title library on EST destinations like Amazon (s AMZN), iTunes (s AAPL) and Blockbuster (s BBI).

IFC titles heading to Netflix’s streaming service include Errol Morris’ The Thin Blue Line and John Sayles’ Return of the Secaucus Seven.

As we’ve written before, Netflix’s Achilles’ heel is its streaming content library. Though it has over 17,000 titles, it needs to make sure that service is robust enough so that the number of subscribers using the service keeps growing. Check out Om’s recent talk with Netflix CEO Reed Hastings at our recent NewTeeVee Live Conference for more on his company’s streaming efforts.

Separately, though we didn’t see anything official announced, it looks like Netflix also just got a whole boatload of Saturday Night Live content in this week, including seasons 1 – 5.

To learn more about streaming directly to TVs, check out the report on The Evolution of Over-the-Top Video over at our subscription research service, GigaOM Pro.

Pushing Twilight, Darth Vader on Viral Ads: NTV Station Today

Debates about the effectiveness of viral marketing have been waging for years, but a German-accented Darth Vader has never had a chance to weigh in on the subject — until, of course, this Star Wars redub. Admiral Motti questions whether or not viral ads are really worth the money — but Darth Vader finds his lack of faith disturbing.

And when it comes to releasing a web series, what strategy is best — one episode at a time, or all at once? Karina Longworth, reviewing the new IFC series Pushing Twilight, believes that sometimes the latter option works best — especially if the series starts off weak and improves with time. Read more at NewTeeVee Station!

IFC Gets “Downfront” with New Series

Before the networks starting hosting their “upfronts,” held its own tongue-in-cheek “downfronts” to showcase its new slate of web series originals. The site is in the midst of moving away from becoming just a brochure for its oldteevee sibling to rolling out original comedies, how-tos and even some hipster porn all summer long.

Up on IFC now is Wilfred, a comedy from Australia about a mischievous dog that terrorizes his female owner’s new boyfriend. The hook is that though Wilfred is a dog, he’s played by a guy in a dog suit, which actually makes the series funny. Though to be fair, this one wasn’t created for the web, it’s a TV show from Down Under that IFC licensed and cut up into snack-sized bits.

But who cares about talking man-dogs when you have naked nerds?

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